A Revolutionary Approach to Pricing and Client Care

Here at Lanyon Bowdler we have started a small revolution.  For too many years so-called "client care" has been too focused on ticking boxes for our regulators and quality assurance auditors.  The rules about client care and providing costs information in writing first came about in 1990.  Since then the Law Society and others have produced template letters, which have been slavishly copied and expanded, so that clients have been receiving the equivalent of "War and Peace".  By and large, the process has been of little value to clients and the material is probably hardly ever read in full.  For law firms it has become a self-serving tick box exercise in order to jump through regulatory hoops but, from the client's perspective, it really does not help much.

The questions that most clients want answering from the word go are: –

•    What are you going to do for me? 
•    What aren't you doing for me? 
•    Who is going to do it? 
•    When will it be done by? 
•    How much is it going to cost?

As part of our Revolution we are scrapping the old-style client care correspondence and we are dealing with these questions as simply and transparently as possible.

With the advent of Outcomes Focused Regulation, the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) has enabled law firms to develop new ways of complying with the SRA Code of Conduct with the focus being on outcomes for the client, rather than on form filling and ticking boxes to prove compliance.

Coupled with this new approach, we have also revolutionised the way in which we price our services.  We now endeavour to provide clients with a pricing choice.  What does this mean?  It means that, as far as possible, we will give our clients at least two, and possibly more, pricing options and our clients will be totally free to choose which price they want to pay for the service offered.

In particular we know clients are getting fed up with paying large bills based on hourly rates and estimates that can often run out of control with a big surprise at the end, and they really value "price certainty" and sometimes the sharing of risk.  We now strive to deliver options in every case, leaving it to the clients to choose which one they want.

This new approach has led to an amazing response from clients who realise that it is a radical shift away from how law firms have traditionally operated, and they welcome it with enthusiasm.  Of course, what makes the clients happy also makes us happy as we always strive to exceed their expectations.

It has also had a remarkable effect on staff who feel liberated from the old way of doing things and enjoy the reaction they receive from our delighted clients.

Some revolutions take longer than others to succeed.  After doing it the old way for over 20 years, it will take time, but we are getting there.  We welcome any feedback.